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A manufacturing boss says it has become almost impossible to hire Gen Z workers because they ‘don’t want to get their hands dirty’. 

It comes as the Albanese government revealed their plans for the future of Australian manufacturing this month, with a $15 billion National Reconstruction Fund designed to create jobs and diversify the economy.

Stripco Sandblasting and Powder Coating boss Paul Bucciarelli said he is struggling to find young people who want to work at his southwest Sydney factory.

‘We are in dire straits in this country when it comes to manufacturing,’ he told A Current Affair on Sunday night.

‘The problem is there’s a stigma in Australia with young people about taking on jobs, rolling up their sleeves and getting your hands dirty.’

Tradie boss unleashes at younger generation and their parents:  ‘Don’t want to get their hands dirty’

Manufacturer Paul Bucciarelli said there’s a ‘stigma’ in Australia about ‘getting your hands dirty’ in a job

The Stripco Sandblasting and Powder Coating boss is struggling to find young workers and blames university education (pictured Stripco workers)

The Stripco Sandblasting and Powder Coating boss is struggling to find young workers and blames university education (pictured Stripco workers)

Mr Bucciarelli said his employees are fast approaching retirement age and he is desperate to fill their jobs with a new generation of workers but said the task is proving near impossible.

‘We need a new generation to come through and we have not been able to find them,’ he said. 

He blames an obsession with university education as a major reason why young people don’t want to work in manufacturing jobs anymore.

‘[There’s] too many people educated, earning very little money and too much competition in those areas and in other areas like construction and getting your hands dirty, [there’s] not enough people,’ Mr Bucciarelli said.

Mr Bucciarelli said there were 'too many people educated' and were receiving low salaries in their competitive white collar jobs. The boss blames parents for pushing children 'to educate themselves'

Mr Bucciarelli said there were ‘too many people educated’ and were receiving low salaries in their competitive white collar jobs. The boss blames parents for pushing children ‘to educate themselves’

Although he added that its ‘not necessarily their fault’ and parents are responsible for ‘pushing them to educate themselves’.

‘Society, government [and] education institutions have educated them in that way,’ Mr Bucciarelli said.

‘And [pushed] them in that direction to feel like they’re entitled.’



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